Iowa runners dedicate miles for Mollie Tibbetts

Iowa college student Mollie Tibbetts was found dead Tuesday morning.

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Iowa college student Mollie Tibbetts was found dead Tuesday morning.

Runners in Iowa are dedicating their roadwork to the memory of Mollie Tibbetts, the Iowa college student who was murdered while jogging in July, KCCI reported.

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Runners are using the hashtag #MilesForMollie as they post on social media, dedicating every mile they run to Tibbetts, the television station reported.

"Any time you can take a positive message and overrun the trolls out there who have something negative to say, that's a good thing," Des Moines police Sgt. Paul Parizek told KCCI.

Tibbetts, 20, vanished last month while jogging in Brooklyn, Iowa. Her body was found Tuesday morning in a rural cornfield. She was killed by "multiple sharp force injuries," according to preliminary autopsy results from the Iowa State Medical Examiner.

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Police are reminding runners that it is important to have a safety plan in place.

"You always want to make sure you're (wearing) well-lit (clothing) so people can see you and you can see where you're going," said Christine Comito of Fleet Feet in Des Moines.

Police are urging runners to carry their cellphones, adding that apps that track your run can also help keep you safe.

"If we can tell you're in distress, once you get that call to us, we can work with cellphone companies to ping you and get your geographical location and get help to you that way," Parizek told KCCI. "It's sad that we even have to take these things into consideration and even more sad that they're almost exclusively crimes of violence against women."

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